Center for Fish Biology and Fishery Biotechnology

Research Group of Fish Mucosal Immunology




PI: Prof. Xu Zhen, PhD 


Postdoctor: Kong Weiguang 

Doctoral Student: Xu Haoyue, Cheng Gaofeng 

Master Students: Wang Xinyou, Wang Zixuan, Yu Jiaqian, Cai Chang 

Contact Us:  


Room: No. 3 Laboratory Building 820, 822, 824 

General Introduction: 

The studies of research group of fish mucosal immunology focus on basic and applied aspects of the fish mucosal immune system. This group is interested in understanding the basic biology underpinning how mucosal adaptive immune responses during infection by pathogens (virus, parasite, bacteria and fungi et al), especially the function of B and T cells, and the interactions of different fish B cell subsets with T cells at fish mucosal sites. Another strong interest of the group is to explore the regulation of fish microbiota by mucosal immune system, as well as to ascertain the role of microbiota in shaping fish immunity. We aim to uncover fundamental principles that promote colonization of probiotics on the fish mucosal surface (gut, skin and gills et al), antigens presentation to T and B cells, and to harness this knowledge for the development of new vaccine strategies in control of fish diseases. 


Recent Publications: 

1.      Yongyao Yu#, Zhenyu Huang#, Weiguang Kong#, Fen Dong#, Xiaoting Zhang, Xue Zhai, Gaofeng Cheng, Mengting Zhan, Jiafeng Cao, Liguo Ding, Guangkun Han, Fumio Takizawa, Yang Ding, J. Oriol Sunyer*, Zhen Xu*. Teleost swim bladder, an ancient air-filled organ that elicits mucosal immune responses. Cell Discovery. 2022, 8:31. 

2.      Jiafeng Cao#, Liguo Ding#, Qingchao Wang#, Guangkun Han, Dacheng Qin, Gaofeng Cheng, Zhaoran Dong, Qingjiang Mu, Weiguang Kong, Xia Liu, Yongyao Yu, Zhen Xu*. Conserved role of mTORC1 signaling in B cell immunity in teleost fish. Journal of Immunology. 2022. 

3.      Xiaoting Zhang#, Yongyao Yu#, Haoyue Xu#, Zhenyu Huang, Xia Liu, Jiafeng Cao, Kaifeng Meng, Zhengben Wu, Guangkun Han, Mengting Zhan, Liguo Ding, Weiguang Kong, Nan Li, Fumio Takizawa, J. Oriol Sunyer, Zhen Xu*. Prevailing role of mucosal Igs and B cells in teleost skin immune responses to bacterial infection. Journal of Immunology. 2021, 206 (5): 1088-1101. 

4.      Yongyao Yu#, Liguo Ding#, Zhenyu Huang#, Haoyue Xu#, Zhen Xu*. Commensal bacteria-immunity crosstalk shapes mucosal homeostasis in teleost fish. Reviews in Aquaculture. 2021, 13: 2322-2343. 

5.      Zhen Xu#, Fumio Takizawa#, Elisa Casadei, Yasuhiro Shibasaki, Yang Ding, Thomas J. C. Sauters, Yongyao Yu, Irene Salinas*, J. Oriol Sunyer*. Specialization of mucosal immunoglobulins in pathogen control and microbiota homeostasis occurred early in vertebrate evolution. Science Immunology. 2020, 5(44): eaay3254. 

6.      Yongyao Yu#, Weiguang Kong#, Haoyue Xu, Zhenyu Huang, Xiaoting Zhang, Liguo Ding, Shuai Dong, Guangmei Yin, Fen Dong, Wei Yu, Jiafeng Cao, Kaifeng Meng, Xia Liu, Yu Fu, Xuezhen Zhang, Yongan Zhang, J. Oriol Sunyer, Zhen Xu*. Convergent evolution of mucosal immune responses at the buccal cavity of teleost fish. iScience. 2019, 19: 821-835. 

7.      Weiguang Kong#, Yongyao Yu#, Shuai Dong, Zhenyu Huang, Liguo Ding, Jiafeng Cao, Fen Dong, Xiaoting Zhang, Xia Liu, Haoyue Xu, Kaifeng Meng, Jianguo Su, Zhen Xu*. Pharyngeal immunity in early vertebrates provides functional and evolutionary insight into mucosal homeostasis. Journal of Immunology. 2019, 203(11): 3054-3067. 

8.      Yongyao Yu#, Weiguang Kong#, Yaxing Yin, Fen Dong, Zhenyu Huang, Guangmei Yin, Shuai Dong, Irene Salinas, Yongan Zhang, Zhen Xu*. Mucosal immunoglobulins protect the olfactory organ of teleost fish against parasitic infection. PLOS Pathogens. 2018, 14(11): e1007251. 

9.      Zhen Xu, Fumio Takizawa, David Parra, Daniela Gomez, Louise von Gersdorff Jorgensen, Scott E. LaPatra, J. Oriol Sunyer*. Mucosal immunoglobulins at respiratory surfaces mark an ancient association that predates the emergence of tetrapods. Nature Communications. 2016, 7: 10728. 

10.   Zhen Xu#, David Parra#, Daniela Gomez#, Irene Salinas, Yong-an Zhang, Louise von Gersdorff Jorgensen, Rasmus Demuth Heinecke, Kurt Buchmann, Scott LaPatra, J. Oriol Sunyer. Teleost skin, an ancient mucosal surface that elicits gut-like immune responses. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 2013, 110(32): 13097-13102.